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All Guides Swain Guides CHOO CHOO SWAIN! COMPREHENSIVE SWAIN MID GUIDE 7.6
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Swain Statistics for Choo Choo Swain

Author's performance with Swain compared to the ranked average.

Value
Average
Games Played
186
6
Win %
58
43
Kills
6.0
5.1
Assists
8.2
7.6
Deaths
5.6
6.0
KA:D Ratio
2.6
2.1
Gold Earned
11.9K
10.3K
Creep Score
174.6
151.4
Average
  • Author Champion Statistics
  • Guide Details

Summoner Spells Back to Top

4.png - ALWAYS take this for swain. It is good for catching kills , closing in gaps to get to those horrible ADCs , getting out of sticky situations cause you thought it would be great to try and 1v5 , or you can use it wisely and initiate a team fight.
14.png - Very aggressive spell. I take this 90% almost always to help with fighting in line ,securing kills , and destroying squishy targets in team fights.
12.png - Mainly used in the toplane. Can be used mid if your team already has high DPS. Teleport can be a very useful spell or a very useless spell. If you do not feel confident in your ability to teleport correctly just take ignite. In lower elo games Gold I and under you may even opt out of this in top lane for 14.png. Often times teams will not capitalize on your teleport in lower elos and they will just leave you in the dust to die. ELO HELL AMIRIGHT?
3.png - Since the nerf in 7.5 taking this on swain is even less encouraging. I do not recommend taking this.
6.png - I have not really used this at all but if you do take this do not remove flash. Many mid laners will go 4.png6.png. I have not seen a reason to go this route on swain. So just stick to the standards unless this works miracles for you.
11.png - Swain jungle!?!? , Nah it doesn't work well at all. Trust me....
7.png - With the recent 3.png nerfs and many supports going 14.png now. This just doesn't seem viable for swain. I prefer mobility / damage over this. 
1.png - Played around with this for a little. Is not that great unless they have x1000 CC and even then I will still take 14.png. I like to try and be the carry of the game :).
21.png - This is usually good against burst champions. I have not played around with this too much but once again I like to try and carry and destroy their damage dealers with the combo and 14.png to swing team fights into our favor.


 





New Runes Back to Top

Masteries Back to Top

Why deathfire touch and not thunderlords? The DOT on swains swaintorment.png swainmetamorphism.png makes it so strong in 1v1 and team fighting. Deathfire outscales thunderlords mid and late game. Swain is not an early game champ and you are throwing out alot of damage to go 12 - 18 into thunderlords.
In the cunning tree you can also opt out of Merciless for meditation. I focused heavily on utilizing damage throughout the tree. 

Abilities Back to Top

Q
E
W
Q
Q
R
Q
W
Q
W
R
W
W
E
E
R
E
E
Passive
Q
1
4
5
7
9
W
3
8
10
12
13
E
2
14
15
17
18
R
6
11
16

swaindecrepify.pngDecrepifyswaindecrepify.png

swaindecrepify.png Decrepify: Swain's highest damaging spell. It provides him with CC , zoning , and a DOT if they stay in the spell range. This allows swain to zone during team fights , objectives and during laning. This skill can be tricky to maximize so try to aim it towards the middle of an opponent. swaindecrepify.pngDecrepify also does double damage to minions so it allows Swain to push and farm ranged minion waves easier. Be careful using this spell though as if you are trying to freeze lane and you try to harass your opponent it will auto target to a minion as soon as they leave its range. Other uses of swaindecrepify.pngDecrepify are providing vision in a bush before face checking , peeling summoners off your ADC and prioritizing champions. swaindecrepify.pngDecrepify will prioritize any champion with  swaintorment.pngTorment , so this allows you to focus any carries of your liking. The placement of this spell is crucial as a wrong placement of it can result in you losing a kill , a fight , or even an objective. 


swaindecrepify.pngSummaryswaindecrepify.png
+Try to place in the middle of a champion to maximize its damage.
+Excellent skill for zoning.
+Use it to scouting bushes
+Use to peel from allies.
+Be careful not to push lane with it
+Does double damage to minions.
+Use Torment to prioritize this skill toward carries.
+Use to assist in landing nevermoreswainshadowgrasp.png



swainshadowgrasp.pngNevermoveswainshadowgrasp.png

 swainshadowgrasp.pngNevermove: Is a AOE snare that does a lot of damage. It can be hard to land but with the use of swaindecrepify.pngDecripify it can be landed with ease. Try to aim the skill directly in front of where someone will be walking. Another tip to land this is aim for the middle of a champion if possible. A good snare can sway a team fight in your favor and lock down several carries. Try to plan your swainshadowgrasp.pngNevermove carefully as it has a high cooldown early game. Landing this spell is crucial to swains kit as if you are able to snare the enemy team and keep them in  swaindecrepify.pngDecrepify's distance and swainmetamorphism.pngRavenous Flock's range you will cripple them. While laning save your W for when you over extend just in case you get ganked. It can be used to negate a gank if you land it correctly. A good swainshadowgrasp.pngNevermove can allow swain to get off his full combo and will usually result in a kill. 


swainshadowgrasp.pngSummaryswainshadowgrasp.png

+ Good aoe damage
+ Hard to land
+ Crucial to maximize damage
+Can be used to zone
+Try to save it for when you get ganked.

swaintorment.pngTormentswaintorment.png
 Torment is a DOT that amplifies all damage from  Swain. This can also be used in lane for a quick harass. After throwing torment on your opponent to harass keep in mind that your auto attack is also amplified by this so throw a auto right after you use the skill. When fighting you want to throw this skill on your designated target as quick as possible to maximize your damage. If possible try to throw  Torment before you  Nevermove as it is the only skill that is not a DOT and will not benefit from it. You can push a wave quicker if you throw  Torment on a cannon minion combined with  Decrepify. 
swaintorment.pngSummaryswaintorment.png
+ Amplifies all damage even auto attacks
+ Try to get on opponent asap when fighting
+ Combine with Decrepify to push cannon minion.
+ Torment allows Decrepify to prioritize a champion.
+Throw it on your opponent in lane to get some quick harass on. 


swainmetamorphism.pngRavenous Flockswainmetamorphism.png

Ravenous flock is the best thing about Swain. It provides you with a lot of sustain as well as damage. This allows Swain to trade really well in lane and bully his opponent out of lane. If you get low in life you can pop on your ult and heal up. You do not want to run it too long though as it will drain your mana and make it very hard to CS correctly.  If you see that you are about to get ganked or CCed it is a good idea to turn this on immediately to help your survive-ability. Pay attention to your cooldown of your ult as without it you are easily killable and very weak. During teamfights you want to watch your mana as if you have this on too long you will end up manaless and useless for the rest of the fight. 

swainmetamorphism.pngSummaryswainmetamorphism.png


+ Use your ult for a short duration in lane to recover health
+If you see hard CC or a gank coming pop your ult
+Watch your ult in team fights as it drains mana fast
+Watch your cooldown in lane as you are weak without it







Items Back to Top

Starting Items

    Standard start
    Strong AD Opponent Start

Core Items

    Aim to buy this on your first back.
    If you have a hard lane you can buy one of these depending on AP or AD on your first back.
    Standard Mid Game Build
    Standard Mid Game Build Against Strong AP
    Standard Full Game Build Example
    Versus Double AP Example
    Versus Full AD Example
    do not forget to buy this after full build

Situational Items

    Get a Frozen heart if they have alot of attack speed champions on there team. Rylai's if opponent team is high mobility. Thornmail if team is full AD auto attackers. Guardians angel is good if you are getting focused hardcore and it is super late game. Randiums is once again against high AD auto attacking team. You only need to buy a morrellos if there team has high lifesteal champs.
    DO NOT BUY These EVER. A tear is not viable on swain. It takes way too long for swain to stack and does not provide enough stats for him. Same with these other items.
    Why ROA and not hextech. The cost of hextech is fairly expensive compaired to ROA. The price for ROA is cheaper and in the end it has better stats. If you have a super good lead this is good to extend that even further as it gives a good burst. Otherwise just go ROA unless you're super ahead.
    Ninja tabi does wonders and will allow you to soak up ad damage better. I prefer to be more in the tank side so i always opt for ninja tabis or merc treads. Sorc shoes are fine if your team is already tanky enough.

Matchups Back to Top

Click on a champion below to see the author's notes on that particular matchup.

  • Ahri
    Medium
  • Anivia
    Medium
  • Annie
    Easy
  • Aurelion Sol
    Easy
  • Azir
    Medium
  • Brand
    Medium
  • Cassiopeia
    Hard
  • Fizz
    Hard
  • Karthus
    Easy
  • Katarina
    Medium
  • LeBlanc
    Medium
  • Lux
    Medium
  • Orianna
    Medium
  • Riven
    Medium
  • Syndra
    Hard
  • Talon
    Medium
  • Twisted Fate
    Easy
  • Veigar
    Medium
  • Viktor
    Medium
  • Vladimir
    Medium
  • Xerath
    Medium
  • Yasuo
    Medium
  • Zed
    Medium
  • Ziggs
    Easy
  • Zilean
    Medium

VS

Ahri

Medium

This is a fairly close match up. Be sure to dodge her skills as she can chunk you down fairly fast. If she hits 6 before you and you are less than 70% life play it extremely safe as if she lands aahriseduce.png charm on you she will kill you. If she has ahritumble.pngult try not to waste your ignite on her unless its a 100% kill. She can easily dodge out of your skills and mitigate damage with her ult.

VS

Anivia

Medium

This is pretty much a farm lane. Do not try to go ham against her unless your jungler is helping you. You will not win a fight against her if her egg is up. Farm up and try and get your jungler to gank. Be sure to dodge herflashfrost.png stun as she can kill you if she has 14.png ignite and is lv 6.

VS

Annie

Easy

Annie is a fairly easy champ to lane against. Pay attention to her stun counter and play around that. Harrass her withswaintorment.png E and swaindecrepify.pngQ when possible. One full rotation on her with ignite and she is most likely dead. Pay attention to when her infernalguardian.pngult and 4.pngflash is up as she can 100 to 0 you with ignite and catch you by surprise.

VS

Aurelion Sol

Easy
Aurelion Sol is very similar to TF. He is extremely easy to lane against if you dodge hisaurelionsolq.png stun and his aurelionsolw.pngfloating orbs. Push this lane as much as you can to prevent him from roaming to your team mates. Be sure to notify people as soon as he goes missing. You should easily win this match up. 

VS

Azir

Medium

Azir can severely outrange you and harrass you. Play it safe til lv 6 and just try to farm with your swaindecrepify.pngQ. You will probably lose alot of CS to under your turret as most Azirs will push into you. At lv 6 you can win a fight against him if you are healthy. Pay attention to his placements of his azirw.pngsand soldiers as they can azirqwrapper.pngpoke you , charge towards you , and Azir can chargeazirewrapper.png towards one of them. Be careful diving him as he can easily get you in a sticky spot with azirr.png

VS

Brand

Medium

Pre 6 you should not try to fight brand and focus on farming. You need to dodge his skill shots are you can have fun watching your life deplete if you get hit. One of his skills can drain your life as his passive constantly renews deathfire touch mastery and can be a pain. If he is six do not get stunned and hit by his combo or you will die. You can easily out harrass him once you hit 6 and bully him if you dodge his skill shots. I suggest getting some early MR if you are having problems against him.

VS

Cassiopeia

Hard

Cassiopeia will destroy you pre 6. Do not try to fight a good Cassiopeia pre 6 as she will destroy you. Do not get cassiopeiaw.pngpoisoned by her as her cassiopeiae.pngtwin fangs does more damage. If you do end up getting poisoned by her try and use your swaindecrepify.pngq to stop her from chasing you down. Play it safely to lv 6. As soon as you hit lv 6 you can win a fight against her. If you try and fight her at lv 6 try and bait her ult by throwing your skills down on her but turning around really quick so you do not get cassiopeiar.pngPetrified. Try to harrass her a little before you try to fight her as if you do get petrified the fight will be swayed in her favor and she could kill you.

VS

Fizz

Hard

Fizz is an annoying POS. He can easily dive fizzq.pngfizzw.pnginto you and get out with fizze.pngplayful. Play it safe until 6 and even then still play it safe. As soon as fizz hits 6 he will try to cheeze you. If you lands his ultfizzr.png on you at long range you are basically dead. His ult will go through minions so be careful. He can 100 - 0 you without ignite so care.

VS

Karthus

Easy

Karthus is an ok matchup pre 6. You can harass him pretty easily but if you are out of place and he catches you with one wall he could end up killing you if you dont have flash. Be careful to fight him at 6 as even though you kill him he could still kill you with his passive or ultkarthusfallenone.png.

VS

Katarina

Medium

Katarina is a high mobility champion. Try not to waste yourswaindecrepify.png Q on her or swainshadowgrasp.pngW if she has minions by her or a dagger down as she can just katarinaewrapper.pngshunpo out of it immediately. If you happen to catch her off guard without any minions in lane go for it and try to harass her. Aside from that though it is an easy lane and you should be able to bully her.

VS

LeBlanc

Medium

She is difficult to lane with pre 6. You will most likely just be sitting at your turret. PLAY SAFE she can burst you down even before lv 6 and you do not want to happen. Try and rush some MR

VS

Lux

Medium

Lux has alot of cc luxlightbinding.pngluxlightstrikekugel.pngand a luxprismaticwave.pngshield over time which counters your DOT spells. She will win trades pre 6 and can burst you down fast. Focus on farming until 6. If you fight her be careful of herluxlightbinding.png snare because if she has luxmalicecannon.pngult you are pretty much dead. Try to start a fight when you know her shield is on cool down.

VS

Orianna

Medium

Pre 6 she can take your harass pretty well due to her shield. So just play it safe and farm. Be sure to dodge her skill shots and use your swaindecrepify.pngQ to zone her from farming and using her abilities on you. If she is running ignite one full rotation of her combosorianaizunacommand.pngorianadissonancecommand.pngorianadetonatecommand.png when she is lv 6 could kill you so pay attention to where her ball is!

VS

Riven

Medium

VS

Syndra

Hard

Syndra is a tough lane for Swain. All of her skills out range Swain's. You will lose trades until level 6 so play it safe until then. Before level 6 just try to last hit minions with swaindecrepify.pngQ and Wswainshadowgrasp.png. If she ends up freezing the lane do not worry. Do not sacrifice your life to last hit the minions as in the end you will just have to back and you will lose even more experience. Once you hit 6 it is still dangerous to play around with Syndra unless you are super confident. She can burst you 100% - 0 easily if she has ignite and if not easily 75% - 0. If she does manage to blow her syndrar.pngult try to time it and during that window you can harass her a great deal. Try to buy some early MR such as a Negatron Cloak to negate her ability to burst you 100 - 0.

VS

Talon

Medium

Talons burst damage is pretty high pre 6.  He can kill you at lv 2 if you arent careful. Do not bother fighting him pre 6 and even then at 6 it is tough to catch him out with his talone.pngwall jumping skill. Push the lane as hard as you can post 6 so he will lose cs if he trys to roam. Also notify your team if he roams as he can roam fairly fast.

VS

Twisted Fate

Easy

Twisted fate is super easy to lane against. He may cause problems for your team mates though. If he is out of your sight for even a second he can turn a 2v2 into a 3v2. Be sure to warn your team mates when he hits 6 ,and when he is missing for just a second. In lane harass him as much as possible and push the lane so he is forced to stay in lane and if he destiny.png he will lose a great deal of gold and exp from minions at towers. Pay attention to his actions as an easy flash gold card pickacard.pngcan make the enemy jungler really happy. You should have no problem against this lane if you harass and dodge his skills.

VS

Veigar

Medium

VS

Viktor

Medium

Viktor has the slight upper hand pre 6 due to hisviktorpowertransfer.png shield. If you see that hisviktorpowertransfer.png shield is down now is your time to try and harass him. Be sure to dodge his laser and after he uses hisviktorpowertransfer.png Siphon Power run away and wait 3.5 seconds for the modified auto attack to go away. At lv 6 its an even match up depending on who gets on who first.

VS

Vladimir

Medium

Vlads is definitely becoming more common in games now and you could see him mid lane. Vlad can out sustain you pre 6 so it might be better to just farm then try to harrass constantly. Pay attention to vlads vladimirq.pngQ bar. If it is yellow he will be running towards you to get his empoweredvladimirq.png Q on you and that will do alot of damage to you and heal him more. At lv 6 you if he goes on you first he could kill you if he has ignite so be sure to bait out his Wvladimirsanguinepool.png before throwing down your skills are he will win the fight.

VS

Xerath

Medium

Xerath has an insane amount of poke. If you can manage to bait and dodge his skills you can harass him fairly easy. If you are not confident in dodging his skills focus on farming until lv 6. Keep in mind Xearth's range is really far and pay attention to when he charges up his blast.

VS

Yasuo

Medium

Yasuo is just a huge pain in the ass to lane against. With his yasuowmovingwall.pngwindwall and his passive he will mitigate alot of your damage pre lv 6. Just try to farm and do not fight as he will win. Use your swaindecrepify.pngQ to zone him from you and farm. At lv 6 you win trades against him and as long as you bait his yasuowmovingwall.pngwindwall and don't throw everything into it you should be good.

VS

Zed

Medium

Pre 6 is a skill based matchup. I don't recommend fighting and just farming as if he wins he will most likely destroy you the rest of the game. Play it safe til 6 and even then he can easily dodge your skills and dive you with zedw.pngzedr.pngshadow. Harass him when you know his zedw.pngshadow is on cool down.

VS

Ziggs

Easy

Ziggs is an easy lane but beware of hisziggsq.png poke. He can also push the lane extremely fast with ziggse.png and ziggsq.png. Post 6 you can easily kill if you catch him off guard without hisziggsw.png satchel.

VS

Zilean

Medium

Zilean is very annoying. Just be sure to dodge his bombs and at lv 6 dont get baited by his ult. It is possible to kill him at lv 6 but you need to time his ult and make sure you wait for it to turn off.

Laning Phase Back to Top

Level 1 

During this time you most likely want to watch your jungle for counter ganks. If you started Q you can use it to assist in scouting for your team. Afterwards if it seems to be in the clear and buffs spawned just head to your lane. Do not try to harass at level 1 as most champions will win against you at level 1.

Level 2-6

Most times you will just be farming from these levels as Swain doesn't get really strong until he gets his R. If you do decide to be aggressive in lane just be weary of the consequences. Going aggressive in lane will allow you to be available to gank so be sure to try and save your Q or W to help mitigate your risk. A good time to play aggressive is if you just saw the enemy jungler pop in a different lane , so try and pay attention to the map to minimize your chance of getting ganked.

Level 6-9

During these levels is when swain can really bully his opponent.  If your opponent did not build any MR against you , it is possible for you to 100 - 0 them if you catch them out with a W or a good Q. If you land a W you can throw down the rest of your skills along with 14.png and they will even try to 4.png sometimes but the DOT will still kill them. If you land a good Q you can force a 4.png by throwing a good W right in front of them. If they do not 4.png  they will most likely be dead.  Once again though be sure to watch for the enemy jungler before you go ham on your opponent. If your opponent does have alot of MR and is a tough cookie to kill you can push your lane to the tower and try to roam and assist your team. If you do this be sure to push your wave completely and not waste too much time as if you do too many failed ganks you suffer exp and gold from being away from your lane too long.

 

Teamfights Back to Top

As soon as a bot lane tower is destroyed you can expect your ADC to come in your lane and just start taking CS and pushing it. This is often mean the game has transitioned into mid game and team fights will start happening. During team fights you need to realize your position in it. There are several questions that you need to think of before you decide what your position is.Are you fed? Is your ADC a bozohead? Is your team super behind? Does your team have any initiation?



You are fed and your team does not have a initiator.

 If you are fed you can initiate fights with a good 4.png  and swainshadowgrasp.png. You want to quickly pop swainmetamorphism.png and find a squishy or carry to throw 14.png and swaintorment.png. Immediately after throwing your swaintorment.png you want to throw swaindecrepify.png on that squishy you targeted with  swaintorment.png.  If you get too low be sure to pop 3157.png while in swainmetamorphism.png to sustain longer in the fight. If the enemy team has high burst and you are initiating it may be smart to pop 3157.png after throwing your skills to prevent you from getting deleted.


You are fed but your team does have a initiator.

If you are fed but you have a Amumu or some other good initiator wait for them to initiate for you so you can save your 4.png.  You want to try and focus the teams carries so repeat the usual mentioned above but save your 4.png just in case if a carry kites you well or tries to run away.


You are not fed and your adc is a bozo

If you are not fed and your adc is a bozo you want to try and catch a carry out of place out with a 4.png and  swainshadowgrasp.png  to sway the fight in your favor. If your team still doesnt have a initiator you will have to save your 4.png  to initiate. If your team is behind it is better to catch someone out first and then fight a 4v5. 

Your ADC is a God

If your ADC is amazing you want to try and peel for them. Save your skills for bruisers or carries trying to get on them. A good swaindecrepify.png can prevent someone from jumping on your ADC and a good swainshadowgrasp.png will allow your adc to run away if they do jump on them. Just be on your ADC's ass and do not let them die!

Streamlink Back to Top

I stream Monday - Friday from 6PM PST - 2AM PST. 

You can find my stream here Choo Choo Swain

Feedback Back to Top

If you have any additional questions or would like clarification on any part of the guide please let me know! 

Discord Back to Top

If you have any questions or would like some clarification feel free to join the Choo Choo Swain Discord.

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